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Monday, October 23, 2017

Pakistani Prime Minister Confirms Negotiations Ongoing for T129

Pakistan's Prime Minister took a test flight of the T129 attack helicopter, which Islamabad is considering procuring.

During a visit to Turkey, new Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi took a test flight onboard the T129 attack helicopter. Following the flight, the prime minister commended the Turkish defense industry and congratulated Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Turkish achievements in the defense sector.

Prime Minister Abbasi, who began his term in August, confirmed to journalists that Islamabad is actively participating in negotiations with Turkey over a potential acquistion of the helicopter for the Pakistani Army. He said that the Army is continuing to evaluate the T129.

During Prime Minister Abbasi's visit, Turkish officials briefed the prime minister on the T129's specifications.

Previous reporting earlier in the year suggested that discussions were ongoing between Turkey and Pakistan over a potential purchase of the T129. Reportedly, financial terms of an agreement still needed to be concluded. It is unclear how many helicopters Pakistan is looking to purchase, though some reports from 2016 suggested that the country was looking for over three dozen T129s.

Prime Minister Abbasi did not offer any expected timeframe for completion of the deal.

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